Freestyles were a regular part of rap radio by 1997 but this is like a Mr Bongo regular's wet dream. It's a 37-minute freestyle session on Sway & Tech's Wake Up Show from late 1997 and the line up is immense. Kool G Rap, Craig G, Juice, Shorty Wreck, Eminem, Kwest Tha Madd Lad, Thirstin Howl, Wordsworth & Mos Def and Talib Kweli all step up and do their thing. A lot of those names were new on the scene at the time so there's definitely an element of hungry MCs with something to prove when their time on the mic comes around.
As far as I can tell, this is a simultaneous broadcast with Marley Marl who's on the radio in NYC with G Rap and the lads. At one point you'll hear Eminem (of all people) get told to hold off rhyming so they can switch over for some rhymes from the east coast.
- DJ Step One
Irish Craig - RandomRapRadio, DJ Step One
Sway, King Tech, DJ Revolution, Joe Quixx
Marley Marl, Half Pint, Carmelita, Kool G Rap, Craig G, Juice, Shorty Wreck, Fat Cat Kareem, Eminem, Kwest Tha Madd Lad, Thirstin Howl III, Wordsworth, Mos Def, Talib Kweli